Winter Beef Stew

by Rachel on December 8, 2012

Winter Beef Stew

When the weather gets cold and wet, which it does far too rarely in Southern California, I just want to bake things, wear fleece, cuddle with the Stern kitten and make slow cooked stew. Slow cooked things have all sorts of advantages. First, because they cook really slowly your house smells fabulous for much longer. Second, because stews cook really slowly you have lots of time to do other things in between when they start and when they finish. For example, you can clean out the garage, or buy things on the internet, or finish the last chapter of your novel, or call your mother, or stare at your navel (not to be confused with novel). Third, because stews cook REALLY slowly they offer you an opportunity to meditate, practice the art of patience, complete 4,000 Zen breaths, or impatiently pretend that the stew is done two hours earlier than I said it would be.

Winter Beef Stew (makes 8 servings)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups onions, diced
  • 2 leeks, washed carefully, sliced lengthwise and then sliced
  • 12-oz peeled pearl onions
  • 3 lbs beef stew meat cut into 1 ½ inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ cups dry red wine
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • One 10-oz jar bell pepper/artichoke tapenade
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • Two 28-oz cans whole peeled Italian tomatoes (including juices)
  • 20-oz sliced crimini mushrooms
  • 1 lb new potatoes, washed and cut in half (don’t peel them)

Heat the olive oil in large soup pot or Dutch Oven. Add the chopped onions, leeks and pearl onions. Saute on medium heat for 10-12 minutes. Add the beef stew meat and brown for 8 minutes. Add the flour. Stir quickly to coat the onions and beef. Add the red wine and allow to simmer for 1-2 minutes. Add the beef broth, the canned tomatoes and the tapenade. I like to stick a sharp knife into the can of tomatoes and coarsely slice them so they are no longer whole. Add the salt and pepper. Add the potatoes. Bring the stew to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer uncovered for three hours, stirring occasionally. Serve. This stew is even better the second day. Eat half on day one, pop the leftovers in the fridge and truly savor the rest on day two.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Amanda December 10, 2012 at 10:41 am

Hi There!

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